Friday, March 13, 2009

Top UFA Defensemen Available This Summer

Ok - so maybe this is a little early to be doing. Most teams are still battling it out to secure a playoff spot and those that know they are heading to the postseason are trying to secure the best playoff seed possible. But, now that the NHL Trade Deadline has passed us by, the next most exciting date for hockey bloggers and hockey fans is July 1st (otherwise known as the day that free agency begins). Just like the way we looked at the top names who were likely to be traded leading up to the Trade Deadline, we're going to take a look at the top UFAs that will be available this summer, sorted by position.

Yesterday we took a look at the top UFA Wingers that are available this summer and on Wednesday we previewed the top UFA centers that will be available [Link]

Now we'll take a look at the top UFA Defensemen that will be available this summer. The amount of +'s or -'s next to each player indicates whether I think that the player's contract next season will be more or less than the current contract and by how much. If a player has one + or - next to his name then I think he's looking at a minor salary increase or decrease. Several +'s or -'s indicates that I think the player is looking at a significant increase/decrease. Also, I'm not taking into account that certain players will give a hometown discount, all salary expectations I'm indicating are if the player were to hit the open market. The list below is in the order of attention that I think that each player will be given, not necessarily in the order of best UFA available.

Jay Bouwmeester
- Florida - Salary 08/09 $4.88M, +++
Scott Niedermayer - Ducks - Salary 08/09 $6.75M, about the same or retire
Rob Blake - Sharks - Salary 08/09 $5M, about the same or retire
Mike Komisarek - Montreal - Salary 08/09 $1.9M, +++
Mattias Ohlund - Canucks - Salary 08/09 $3.5M, +
Jordan Leopold - Flames - Salary 08/09 $1.5M, ++
Sergei Zubov - Dallas - Salary 08/09 $5.35M, about the same or retire
Mathieu Schneider - Montreal - Salary 08/09 $5.75M, --- or retiring
Derek Morris - NYR - Salary 08/09 $3.95M, ---
Francois Beauchemin - Ducks - Salary 08/09 $1.65M, +
Nick Boynton - Florida - Salary 08/09 $2.95M, -
Jaroslav Spacek - Buffalo - Salary 08/09 $3.3M, --
Chris Chelios - Detroit - Salary 08/09 $750, about the same or retire
Niclas Havelid - NJ - Salary 08/09 $2.9M, - or retiring
Paul Mara - NYR - Salary 08/09 $1.95M, about the same

Full list of this summer's UFA Defensemen


Anonymous said...

Do you think the Rangers will bring back Morris & Mara?

Puck Central said...

I'm going to be doing my own personal analysis of the Rangers after the season is over. But, IMO the NYR can't afford to keep Morris ($3.95M/yr) unless he takes a significant pay cut. If Mara will re-sign for around the same amount he's making this year (which off the top of my head I think is $1.95M), then they should bring him back